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State seems ‘very receptive’ to a raised bike lane on outer Powell, advocates say

Thursday, June 11th, 2015
Cully Blvd cycle track-3
A low mountable curb like the one on NE Cully
is among designs being seriously debated for
SE Powell east of I-205.
(Photo: J.Maus/BikePortland)

It’s looking as if the Oregon Department of Transportation might become one of the first state transportation agencies in the country to build a raised bike lane into an urban highway project.

It’s just a possibility and it’s still years away, but it’s the upshot of a meeting Monday in which several biking advocates urged the state to consider the design as part of its Outer Powell Safety Project.

David Hampsten of the East Portland Action Plan bike committee and the Portland Bicycle Advisory Committee said in an email this week that he attended to urge ODOT “to consider modifying the planned 8-foot bike lanes into either raised cycle-tracks or adding barriers between the roadway and the bikeway users (bikes and mobility devices).”

(more…)

ODOT says new signals with left turn arrows coming to SE Powell next week

Friday, May 29th, 2015
Protest on SE Powell-17.jpg
They heard you.
(Photo: J Maus/BikePortland_

As hundreds of people take to the streets in an expression of frustration about unsafe biking conditions in Portland, the Oregon Department of Transportation has just announced plans to install new left turn arrows at SE Powell and 26th Avenue — an intersection where two people have sustained serious injuries in collisions this month.

This announcement comes as a surprise and is very likely a response to the collision that happened at the intersection today and the resulting public pressure that has come from it. ODOT rep Shelli Romero told me back on May 11th at the protest event at Powell and 26th that they want to “redo this signal” but no one expected such a quick timeline. (more…)

Comment of the week: On city streets, what is passing and speeding even for?

Friday, May 15th, 2015

One of the strangest things about so much of the anger and danger on our streets is that so much dangerous driving doesn’t even accomplish anything for the person doing it.

That’s the truth that reader GB captured perfectly on Wednesday with a simple dash-cam video of a completely futile moment of dangerous driving on Southeast Powell Boulevard.

(more…)

At die-in, ODOT says it’s already doing its best to improve street safety

Wednesday, May 13th, 2015
odoti
The protest was organized after a man biking across Powell Boulevard lost a leg in a collision with a turning pickup truck.
(Photos: M.Andersen/BikePortland unless noted)

About two dozen people lay in the one-way street outside the Oregon Department of Transportation’s Portland regional headquarters Wednesday afternoon in a mostly silent demonstration in support of safety improvements on Portland’s urban highways.

Most had biked to the spot; some lay their bicycles beside them. Others had walked; one said he’d walked downtown from North Portland.

Some were children. Some wore fake blood made from ketchup. One had brought a stack of signs: “Oregon Department of Traumatic Injury.”

(more…)

Travel time and speed data shows impact of Powell protest

Tuesday, May 12th, 2015
Powell protest ride-54.jpg
Concerned Portlanders tamed a major state highway last night by simply crossing the street.
(Photo by J. Maus/BikePortland)

One of the stated goals of last night’s protest action on Southeast Powell Boulevard was to slow traffic down. And according to data live traffic data from Portland State University’s Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) lab, it worked.

(more…)

Anti-speeding bill nears vote in Salem as activists plan “die-in” at ODOT offices

Tuesday, May 12th, 2015
high crash corridors
The City of Portland’s 10 high-crash corridors: Barbur, Beaverton-Hillsdale Highway, Burnside, Sandy, Marine, 82nd, 122nd, Powell, Foster and Division.
(Image: City of Portland)

As Portlanders continue to look for ways to change the culture of speed-oriented streets like Powell Boulevard, state legislators are nearing a vote on a bill designed to do exactly that.

(more…)

Local dad calls for ‘super-legal slow-down’ of Powell Boulevard during Monday rush hour

Sunday, May 10th, 2015
Pedalpalooza Kickoff Ride 2009-42
Dan Kaufman with one of his sons in 2009.
(Photo:J.Maus/BikePortland)

Saying that traffic injuries like the ones that are common on Powell Boulevard “inexcusable and unnecessary” outside the doors of Cleveland High School, the father of two Cleveland students is organizing a protest of the speed-oriented urban highway during Monday’s rush hour.

A collision Sunday involving a pickup truck and a bicycle severed a young man’s leg. Police said the truck had been northbound on 26th and turned left onto Powell in front of two people heading southbound on bicycles.

Dan Kaufman described Monday’s event as a “super-legal slow-down,” in which people deliberately move slowly on a street in order to call attention to the fact that high speeds, and roads designed to encourage them, are inappropriate in an urban context.

(more…)

Bill moving through Salem could hasten transfer of state roads to city control

Thursday, March 19th, 2015
jurisdictional transfer map
Portland-area streets described by ODOT as “highways to be transferred to local jurisdictions” are marked in pink. The blue line, Cornelius Pass Road, is a request from ODOT for a transfer in the other direction.
(Image: ODOT testimony on SB 117.)

Barbur Boulevard, Powell Boulevard, Tualatin Valley Highway, Lombard Street, 82nd Avenue and Macadam Avenue could all be lined up for gradual transfer from state to city control under a bill before Oregon’s legislature.

(more…)

Want to breathe as little pollution as possible? Pedal at exactly 11 mph

Wednesday, July 23rd, 2014
Traffic-3
A woman being exposed to more pollutants than she’d like.
(Photos J.Maus/BikePortland)

With a homebuilt $300 pollution monitor strapped to his bicycle and seven years of Portland State University education in his brain, Alex Bigazzi has been leading a deep exploration into your lungs.

(more…)

Your new favorite way to cross SE Powell is open (photos)

Wednesday, September 11th, 2013
The SE 17th Avenue bridge over Powell has
a wide new multi-use sidewalk.
(Photo by Howard Draper.)

Inner southeast Portland’s summer of detours is finishing with an early Christmas present: great big human-friendly new crossings of Powell Boulevard and the nearby railroad tracks at SE 17th.

The new bridge, built by TriMet as part of the Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail Project, opened to traffic Aug. 30. Last weekend, bike user Howard Draper grabbed the photo at right, so we decided to head over and take a look.

It’s an improvement in many ways, though there are a couple problematic features worth considering.

(more…)

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